Cats have long been associated with Halloween. There are many myths throughout history that may have contributed to this connection, dating back to the ancient Egyptians where priests watched them and interpreted their every movement as a prophecy. In more modern mythology, cats were thought of as witches’ demonic assistants. As the image of a witch came to be linked with Halloween, so did her “familiar” black cat.
Unfortunately because of the myths of cats and Halloween, many cats, particularly black cats can be the target of cruelty on Halloween. Minimise risk, and keep your cat safe this Halloween with these top tips:
- Keep your cat indoors; Offer them some comfort with a quiet and familiar place, away from all the Halloween sights and sounds. Although mostly not intentional, pranks, teasing, or games could terrify an unsuspecting cat and costumes themselves can also be scary for some cats! Provide them a space where they can feel secure, but still within reach of their food and water and remember to provide a litter tray.
- Keep the treats for yourself; Halloween treats are notoriously high in sugar and some contain the sweetener xylitol (birch sugar) or chocolate, both of which are dangerous to cats. (See symptoms of poisoning from Cats Protection). To avoid temptation, why not offer them a suitable cat snack such as Carnilove protein rich soft cat treats, made with wild origin meats, forest fruits and herbs.
- Select Halloween decorations wisely; Some decorations could cause harm to your cat. Kittens can become easily tangled in hanging decorations, chew through the wires of lights or try to climb or pull on decorations. Instead, hang decorations up high, out of their reach or use light projectors. Ensure to move candle-lit pumpkins and carving tools out of paw’s reach too!
- Does your cat need a costume? Pet costumes and collars have become increasingly popular over the years, particularly for photos used on social media. Although they may look cute, costumes are more fun for us than they are for our pets. If you can’t resist the temptation, be sure to choose a costume that allows your cat to move freely, without restricting their sight, hearing or ability to drink/eat and keep an eye of them whist they are wearing it.
- Leave ‘trick or treaters’ treats outside – Regular knocks and ringing on the doorbell can be really unsettling for cats. Consider placing a “help yourself” bucket of treats outside your front door or at the end of your drive instead.